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To Brake or Not to Brake?

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Unread 06-18-2009, 04:00 AM
Platinum Member
Join Date: Apr 2005
Location: Alaska
Posts: 4,895
Re: To Brake or Not to Brake?

I never owned a braked rifle the first 35 years of shooting. Two years ago I had brakes installed on two rifles, a 300 Win Mag and a 338 Edge. Everything about the brakes is a positive except the additional noise, and the extended barrel length. If your gunsmith is local, you could always try it without a brake first, and then if you're unhappy with it, have the brake installed later. The additional fee to install one after the fact wouldn't be too great. Ask your gunsmith about the difference in cost. If you've never shot a rifle with a muzzle brake, I would recommend trying one. Maybe your gunsmith has a braked rifle he could let you shoot a couple times. That might help you decide. They're pretty darn nice.

I now prefer a brake if the rifle kicks very much. 140 grain bullets out of the varmint weight 7mm STW shouldn't kick terribly bad. 180s would kick more and get to about the point where I'd prefer a brake. If you're not going to pack the rifle around through the woods and brush alot, you might go with the muzzle brake right from the get go. They do make shooting the rifle more enjoyable, and I think many people will shoot better if they get kicked less.

I shoot 8 1/2 lb 7mm Rem Mags with 168gr Bergers with no brakes and they're OK. But the recoil is just about to the point where a muzzle brake would be nice. I can't see bullet hits even at long range with either of my 7mm Rem Mags because they jump too much under recoil.

Last edited by phorwath; 06-20-2009 at 05:03 PM.
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Unread 06-18-2009, 09:22 AM
Gold Member
Join Date: Feb 2008
Location: Goshen, IN
Posts: 846
Re: To Brake or Not to Brake?

thanks i will prob put a brake on later if needed. and prob an edge brake heard good things abot them or a holland
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Unread 06-19-2009, 10:18 AM
Silver Member
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Skagit Valley WASHINGTON
Posts: 160
Re: To Brake or Not to Brake?

In January of 2008 my buddy and I bought matching Senderos in 300 Ultra and didn't shot them quite often over the course of a little over a year with no brakes. Neither one of us are very big, but we have been shooting unbraked big game rifles and magnums since well before we were teenagers, and the Ultra Mags weren't what we considered all that bad. Well after my buddy got his knucke busted open a couple of times from the bolt handle under recoil, we decided it was time to calm those mean SOB's down. A couple of months ago, we packed them up and sent them off to Carlock for his Edge Brake. We got them back, put them back together and took them out and shot them. I've spent my fair share of cash on guns and equipment over the years and I will say this - THAT WAS THE BEST MONEY I HAVE EVER SPENT ON SHOOTING - PERIOD. The guns now recoil like a sporter weight 243. I can spot shots at most distances, I am very relaxed and comfortable in all field shooting positions, and I am more focused on the fundamentals of the shot instead of controlling the recoil after the shot. The only downside I can see is a couple extra inches of barrel length and extra noise. I would say get the brake put on from the start. I will have them installed on all new guns as well as a few in the safe from now on.You won't regret it and if the noise and length are bothersome, you can have a thread cap made. Best of luck!
Bill C
Ignorance is bliss...unless you're aware of it.
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Unread 06-20-2009, 02:15 PM
Bronze Member
Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: Safford AZ
Posts: 81
Re: To Brake or Not to Brake?

I never shot a rifle with a brake until a year ago. I installed a hollands brake on a 7mm ultra mag and it was amazing. I now have the same brake on my 30-06 and will never shoot without a brake again. Hope this helps
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